Top 5 Winter Boredom Busters
The holidays are upon us. And if you have kids, that means that weird confused state of excitement for family time vs the knowledge that this will include fighting, extra work, and those two awful words. I’m. Bored. This year, we have already had 5 snow days and it’s only November. As a result, I went into hyper mom mode to find 5 foolproof boredom busters before we enclosed ourselves in 2000 square foot of family bliss. Thankfully, a few days before Turkey Day, a big box of toys and games arrived from Ravensburger, which encompasses several great brands including Brio and Wonder Forge. To test out the boredom busters; cue Thanksgiving and the blizzard of 2018.
1.) It All Starts In the Car—travel games
We don’t have to travel very far to see our family, but 3 hours in the car with 3 kids under eight can still be daunting. I wanted something besides movies and their tablets to fill their time. So I was very excited to open that box and pull out a travel game! Travel games are where it’s at for sure! Compact, fun and enclosed pieces are a parent’s dream. After a few rounds of travel bingo, I handed our oldest the game Take-along Labyrinth from Brio. It was perfect and both of our older kids were able to figure this game out quickly on their own. I love that it is fun and works on their hand-eye coordination. Just enough action to qualify as a boredom buster without causing any fights. Needless to say, we will be getting a few more travel-sized games for the stockings this year!
2.) Activity Books to the Rescue!
When our kids were babies, one of their Aunts bought them each a small canvas bag. They are the perfect bag for a toddler/child to pack and carry themselves. An assortment of toys and books always make it in. This year, I made a stack of boredom busters like math puzzle books, crossword books, dry erase books and some jack-of-all-trade books that included mazes, coloring, dot to dots and crosswords. Arm each kiddo with a plastic box of crayons and you’ve got at least 45 minutes of quiet entertainment. These also provide something fun and new for a little quiet time at Grandmas when the going gets crazy. More boredom busters to the rescue!
3.) Games, Games, Games!
Once you’re a few days into any break or vacation, the fun and excitement tends to wear off. The little (and big!) people all start to get tired and let’s be honest, as a result, the patience level starts to disintegrate. You might think this would NOT be a good time to introduce board games. But tired and bored leads to a dire need of boredom busters. I’ve yet to find a kid (or heck an adult for that matter) who can resist sitting down for a little structured play.
I have a big family, which means at any given moment, there is someone who wants to play a game. Our kiddos ages range from 1-19 and by mid-afternoon we were breaking into our boredom buster games. The littles liked the cool factor of the Five Little Fish game because normally they feel left out during game time. The middles were pretty enthralled by The Incredibles Save The Day game by Wonder Forge because the graphics were amazing. My favorite part was that it encouraged team play and this got them to work together.
Finally, I pulled out the Big Money game and the big kids appeared; ready for action. This game did not disappoint. So much of this game involved luck and it kept the fighting at bay. As a result, I never heard the word b-o-r-e-d once!
4.) Boredom is such a puzzling thing
This boredom buster has become a fun family tradition at my parent’s house over Thanksgiving. After dinner, we always set up a 1000 piece puzzle in the basement. It is a revolving table because family members come and go. But we are able to catch up while working on the year’s puzzle. Sometimes they are super hard. Sometimes we get it finished before everyone goes home that night which leaves us feeling quite accomplished. This year, my mom picked up several 60-100 piece Ravensburger puzzles for the kids. Our kids had so much fun doing those with their cousins, they begged me to set one up when we got home. It was a magical hour of teamwork, problem-solving and planning. I’m adding more puzzles to my Christmas list as we speak.
5.) Don’t forget about the baby–Toys!
I was prepared for top-notch puzzles and games from Ravensburger, but I really needed something fantastic to keep the baby occupied. Thankfully, Brio makes these amazing baby toys and we were lucky to get the My Home Town Camping Set. I love wooden toys and this is a great mix of wooden and plastic. The people and the dog are wooden and the perfect size for a toddler’s hands. This was a great way for her to get in some independent play and we were able to focus on our puzzle and playing games with the kids. Boredom busters for a baby equals win-win!!
These boredom busters worked so well I’m actually excited for this winter. I plan to pick up a few more to have in my stash because I have a feeling we will be spending lots of quality time with each other this winter. While you’re out there creating your own winter boredom buster kit, stock up on some hot cocoa and marshmallows too…it can’t hurt to have some fun treats to go with your stash. Happy Winter!!
Be sure to check out Ravensburger and everything else in our 2018 Holiday Gift Guide.